3/27/13

Secrets of the Supplement Industry


The supplement industry has the ability to rake in over $25 billion dollars a year making it one of the fastest growing fields. Women go and get their hair done, men go and buy supplements. You can buy a basic hair cut, or you can spend a fortune on something fancy. The same applies to supplements; buy the basics, or the bells and whistles. It’s important to cover all of your bases but are you buying nutrition, or are you buying snake oil?


Chances are that you have spent a significant amount of money on some fancy supplement that yielded minimal results. Maybe you bought some new blend of proteins, or a pre workout that claims to have 2x the vascular potential. Being a former assistant manager at a supplement store I can confidently tell you that most of the time you’re wasting money.

Secrets of the Supplement Industry:
Today I want to open your eyes to the mess supplement companies have created. There are lists of things that companies will put on their bottles that sound interesting, but mean nothing.

Patent Pending – means they made the combination so fast that they didn’t test or patent it. It does not mean that this is some scientific breakthrough. Many supplements will say patent pending for years.

Over X amount of ingredients – using algebra we can substitute X for whatever a company will say. I saw an ad that said their supplement had over 70 ingredients! There is something called a clinical dose, which is the minimum amount of a substance that showed a positive effect. For example, D aspartic acid requires 3.75 g at once to show minimal effects. If you buy a product that doesn’t have 3.75 g of D aspartic acid you’re wasting you money. The more ingredients something has, the less of each ingredient possible. If a 10 g serving says it has over 70 ingredients then each ingredient can only have 0.13 g. Think about it.

2X the vascularity/Great Pumps – This one I find very silly. A company assumes that if 5 g of Argenine increases vascularity, then 10 g does double that. No research supports this. In fact some studies suggest that it takes up to 50 grams of argenine without exercise to induce vasodialation (widening of blood vessels). Some companies will make their pre workout 50% argenine and then add filler to the rest. Anything that says NO or vascularity on the bottle is usually selling snake oil.

Proprietary blend - This is my least favorite thing about supplements. A company will do something called pixie dusting. This is when they add a bulk amount of a cheaper ingredient, and then add insignificant amounts of good ingredients. By saying it has a “proprietary blend” (I like to call it a lie factory) they are able to label it has an ingredient even if it is .01 grams. In that quantity most ingredients will do nothing for you.

I am not asking you to throw away your supplements (not as if enough people read so intently that they would do so). I’m just warning you of all the lies that are out there. I’ve seen many men blow a budget on their supplement worship, and it’s never been pretty. The more I research the more I realize nutrition from the source is best. Get yourself ready for a list of what I consider to be ideal supplements next week (I can sense your anticipation from my computer now). Until then I hope to hear that someone has PR'd and seen God move in their life (2 different instances).

Also I will be installing an email subscription tab. If you could add your information to that, that would just be great.

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About Me

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BS, MS - exercise Physiology
EPC - Board Certified Exercise Physiologist

Published Thesis
The impact of three different forms of warm up on performance

Graduate from Midwestern State University, founder of Endunamoo Barbell Club, and Endunamoo Strength and Conditioning. Working to help athletes physically reach their goals and achieve scholarships while spiritually pouring into as many people as possible on all platforms.